1
$\begingroup$

Can there be medium height(neither tall nor short) pea plants in Mendel's experiment?

All textbooks I have read seem to imply that pea plants have to be either tall or short, nothing in between.

$\endgroup$
5
$\begingroup$

Medium height (like in people) and other traits that seem like a mixture of two extremes are often a result of incomplete dominance. For example, a red and white flower are bred to produce an offspring with pink petals.

Mendelian genetics does not include incomplete dominance (which is classified as, surprisingly, non-Mendelian genetics).

Basically, Mendel got very lucky with his choice of plant. Pea plant height is strictly dominant, meaning one dominant allele results in tall plants, regardless of the identity of the second inherited allele. This is a consequence of the genetic makeup of pea plants. Had he tried a similar experiment with snapdragon flower color, he would be very confused.

(See https://www.ndsu.edu/pubweb/~mcclean/plsc431/mendel/mendel2.htm for snapdragon incomplete dominance example.)

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.